Antalya Flights:

Flights to Antalya

image of AntalyaAntalya is one of South West Turkey’s most popular cities. The ancient history combined with great weather, beaches and scenery are what many thousands of tourists come to Antalya each year to enjoy.

The Antalya Airport (airport code: AYT) is 13 kilometres from the downtown of the city, and handles nearly 20 million people each year. You can get a 1-stop flight to Antalya from South Africa with either Swiss Air or Turkish Airlines. The first connects in Zurich and the second in Istanbul. You can also get a 2-stop route that goes through Cairo and Istanbul with either South African Airways or Egyptair. Flights to Antalya vary between 13 and 20 hours duration.

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The Tourist Attractions of Antalya:

Like many settlements on the Mediterranean coast of Turkey, Antalya is an ancient one and has been in existence since the year 150 BC when it was named Attalia after its founder Attalos II. There are still some ancient sites to visit here today, and great beaches, including the following:

Kaleici – Antalya Old Quarter
If you’re looking for the history that Antalya is famous for, then head into the old quarter, called Kaleici, as it’s here that most of Antalya’s famous landmarks can be found. The district is contained within the old city walls and is full of atmospheric narrow streets and lovely old architecture. The most dramatic way to enter into the old quarter is through Hadrian’s Gate.

Hadrian’s Gate
This wonderfully preserved gate into the old city was built by the Romans in the year 130. It is a triumphal arch, consisting of three arches and for many centuries was enclosed by the city walls. It’s believed this is what kept it so well preserved and untouched, as it wasn’t until some of the city walls collapsed that the gate was revealed.

Yivli Minare
Meaning ‘Flited Minaret’ this old and beautifully decorated minaret is the symbol of the city of Antalya. The mosque was one of the first Ismalic buildings in Antalya, built between 1230 and 1373 and it’s thought that it may have been converted from a Byzantine church. That mosque was destroyed in the 14th century and another built in its place with multiple domes. Today it is no longer a mosque but has been opened to the public for several decades as one of Antalya’s museums, the Antalya Ethnographic Museum.

Hidirlik Tower
Square on the bottom and circular on the top Hidirlik Tower is another major landmark of Antalya and it’s situated where the city walls meet the sea. It is thought to have been originally built in the Hellenistic period, so some time between the fall of the Greeks and the rise of the Romans. A small park surrounds the tower today and there are lovely coastal views from here.

Antalya Museum
Also known as Antalya Archaeological Museum, this is one of the largest museums in the whole of Turkey with 13 exhibition halls and an open air museum. It has many thousands of artefacts and pieces from the history of the Mediterranean region.

When Should You Visit?:

Summers are the busiest time of year to visit Antalya, when the weather is hot and sunny and there’s virtually no rainfall. The average highs in the mid 30’s C may be a little too hot for some to sightsee though. Spring and autumn are good times to visit as it’s a little quieter this time of year but still warm to hot. In October for example the average high is 27C. Even winters are mild, but this is the rainy season with a huge amount of rain falling in December and January.

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